History of the 8 hour work day.


Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
Jacksonville, FL
The 8 hour work day sucks IMO ... but here's some history on it

August 20th
1862 Eight-hour workday is born

Today marks a birthday of sorts for the eight-hour workday. In the mid-1800s most people worked ten- or twelve-hour days, prompting the newly formed National Labor Union (NLU) to call on Congress to officially trim the workday. While Congress didn't heed the NLU's pleas, the union's efforts pushed the issue onto the national stage. The public picked up the call for shorter hours, as did some legislators: Federal employees were the first to enjoy truncated days when Congress passed appropriate legislation in 1863. However, after a few fruitful decades, the drive for the eight-hour day hit a snag in 1886, when a strike by workers at the McCormick Reaper Manufacturing Company turned bloody. Though the workers, who had hit the picket line to protest for shorter hours, were victims of violence, the ugly affair, along with the ensuing Haymarket Riot, branded the push for the eight-hour day as a radical movement. But, in 1923, the movement received support from an unlikely ally, as the Carnegie Steel Corporation granted shorter work hours to its employees. Eventually, President Franklin Roosevelt made the eight-hour workday an official part of his New Deal legislation.
Jun 2006
Montana Mountains
I wouldn't have thought anyone during the height of the US Civil War would only be working 8 hours a day.


Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
If you think 8 hours a day is bad, try working 15-18 a day like I use to. At one time I was turning in close to 90 hours a week. And I wasn't getting paid overtime. It was good money, the government didn't know about it, but I was only making $7/hr and working myself to death. I had to give it up or I was gonna be in bad shape. I still feel the effects of working all those hours.
Jun 2006
In places like France, don't people only work like 6 hours a day and get tons of vacation and leisure time off?